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Do You Have a Food Addiction?

FoodAddiction_Woman_400If you really think you have a problem, talk to your doctor about it. But to give you a better idea of how food addiction is defined, here is the Yale Food Addiction Scale, as shared in Thinspired: How I Lost 90 Pounds—My Plan for Lasting Weight Loss and Self-Acceptance.

    YALE FOOD ADDICTION SCALE

The following question asks about your eating habits in the past year.

Answer options for this section:

0: Never
1: Once per month
2: 2-­4 times per month
3: 2-­3 times per week
4: 4+ times per week

In the past 12 months…

1. I find myself consuming certain foods even though I am no longer hungry.

2. I worry about cutting down on certain foods.

3. I feel sluggish or fatigued from overeating.

4. I have spent time dealing with negative feelings from overeating certain foods, instead of spending time in important activities such as time with family, friends, work, or recreation.

5. I have had physical withdrawal symptoms such as agitation and anxiety when I cut down on certain foods. (Do NOT include caffeinated drinks: coffee, tea, cola, energy drinks, etc.)

6. My behavior with respect to food and eating causes me significant distress.

7. Issues related to food and eating decrease my ability to function effectively (daily routine, job/school, social or family activities, health difficulties).

Answer options for this section:

Yes
No

1. I kept consuming the same types or amounts of food despite significant emotional and/or physical problems related to my eating.

2. Eating the same amount of food does not reduce negative emotions or increase pleasurable feelings the way it used to.

Scoring

A. For question 6 or question 7, did you answer “3” or “4”?

No – You do not meet the food addiction threshold

Yes – Continue

B. Is your answer the same as the response in bold, for at least three of the following questions:

1) I find myself consuming certain foods even though I am no longer hungry.
(4)

2) I worry about cutting down on certain foods.
(4)

3) I feel sluggish or fatigued from overeating.
(3 OR 4)

4) I have spent time dealing with negative feelings from overeating certain foods, instead of spending time in important activities such as time with family, friends, work, or recreation.
(3 OR 4)

5) I have had physical withdrawal symptoms such as agitation and anxiety when I cut down on certain foods. (Do NOT include caffeinated drinks: coffee, tea, cola, energy drinks, etc.)
(3 OR 4)

6) I kept consuming the same types or amounts of food despite significant emotional and/or physical problems related to my eating.
(YES)

7) Eating the same amount of food does not reduce negative emotions or increase pleasurable feelings the way it used to.
(YES)

If you meet the food addiction threshold, you may want to consult a professional for further guidance.

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